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When searching for grounds to impeach President George Walker Bush, one does not have to look far. Almost every American has been negatively affected by this man's presidency. This is undoubtedly reflected in his popularity vote, which has been steadily declining since he stepped foot in the white house. George Walker Bush was elected to do a job. The cold, hard fact is that the majority of the nation feels his performance is, and has been substandard. Our fore fathers eloquently designed our constitution to preserve a democracy across the ages and few presidents have challenged that democracy. Isn't it about time we step up to represent and invoke our American born right? We have the ability to change those things in which we do not believe. We have the ability, and the responsibility to not stand by idle and watch one man tear apart what makes this nation great. We, as Americans, have held ourselves to a higher standard. We have unparalleled pride and determination to be the best nation in the world. Why do we hold our nation's leader to a lower standard? Why do we allow President George Walker Bush to remain in office knowing there are better, smarter candidates out there who will maintain and preserve that prestige? Why not rally behind a president who will fight to make our nation better instead of broader? Even if we are too late to impeach President George Walker Bush, we are sending a clear and concise message; "We, the American people, will not allow another president to hold office and lead the nation in a direction We will not follow."

Stated below are four main reasons why President George Walker Bush has "awarded" himself a candidate for impeachment. I believe impeachment of the president is not something to take lightly. I encourage everyone interested in signing this petition to read on and ask yourself if you identify with any of the stated reasons. Thank you for your support and your desire to make a difference.

1) Warrant less, Unconstitutional Wiretaps

FISA was enacted in 1978 to rectify certain dilemmas brought to the attention of the nation through the Watergate scandals of Nixon's term. FISA was erected to prevent the widespread abuse in domestic surveillance that was disclosed in Congressional hearings. Under the guise of national security with respect to the Vietnam War, Nixon ordered seventeen warrant less wiretaps of journalists and White House staffers. These wiretaps have since then proven illegal and were set forth for political purposes.

The intent of FISA, as stated by Congress, is to balance national security requirements and rights to personal privacy and to safeguard against presidential abuse of power. The law calls for court review of all national security wiretaps. The President was given the power to start a wiretap without warrant as long as court permission was obtained within three days.

December 17, 2005, President George Walker Bush openly acknowledged that he repeatedly authorized warrant less wiretaps of American citizens engaged in international calls.

Since then it appears that thousands of warrant less wiretaps occurred. Information obtained from these wiretaps may have been widely circulated among federal agencies. It also appears a number of government officials agree on the wiretaps dubious legality. Several people in the National Security Agency refuse to participate, a deputy attorney general declined to sigh off on some aspects, and a FISA court judge has since resigned in protest to the wiretaps. Still the nation stands idle.

Is it the dubious right of the President as Commander in Chief to break any US laws on the grounds of national security? The President is revered as the Commander in Chief of the Army and the Navy, not the country. He does not hold a monopoly over war-power. If we allow the President to break the law on wiretapping, which is a felony, what is stopping him from breaking any other law on his command? This is sidestepping dangerously close to a dictatorship. President Bush violated the McCain amendment banning torture and degrading treatment of detainees under the title of Commander in Chief. This topic will be addressed in conjunction with the War on Terror. I agree with the grant of power to the President, especially during a time of war, but we should award such empowerment to someone who will not abuse it.

This government was devised as one of limited power for a reason. That reason is to keep the power in the hands of the citizens of the nation. It has been further recognized that the Bush Administration tried to include language broadening the President's war making powers to include domestic activity. President George Walker Bush stated he did not have the time to obtain warrants legally from the FISA courts for wiretapping, regardless of the already instated law that empowers the President the ability to wiretap as long as he obtains a warrant in three days.

These unlawful acts further jeopardize legitimate cases of anti-terrorist prosecutions by allowing them loopholes to move through. Illegally obtained information will not hold up in court, regardless of who acquired it.

Why he did not seek to amend the laws and regulations of FISA to account for new modern technology is beyond me, but why he felt the need to completely disregard them is inexcusable.

2) The Hurricane Katrina Disaster

One would assume, as our nation's leader, the President would have severe impact on the repercussions of a natural disaster in the United States. But I don't think anyone assumed the repercussions would be negative.

When Hurricane Katrina hit Florida at 6:30pm on August 25th, 2005 it is safe to say we were being warned. The events that took place after that moment have changed millions of lives.

On August 28th, 2005 at 12:30pm, President George Walker Bush appeared from a narrow, windowless room at his vacation ranch in Texas. During this briefing the President asked not a single question. His contribution was to assure the folks at the state level that we are fully prepared. Seems he should have asked a few questions, this couldnt be further from the truth that unfolded. It is documented that President George Walker Bush was warned the levees were in danger of breaking. Mayor Nagin stated on CNN as soon as the levee systems are breached, there will be a tremendous amount of water, anywhere from 15 to 20 feet of water in some parts of New Orleans. He also ordered a mandatory evacuation, something that should have been considered a bit earlier.

On August 29th, 2005 at 6:10am, Hurricane Katrina touched down in New Orleans. Within two hours, levees were overtopped. At 9:12am, the National weather service gets reports of a breach in the levees. Meanwhile our President George Walker Bush celebrates Senator John McCains birthday, takes pictures to capture the moment even, and kicked off a drug politicking tour in Arizona at El Mirage Country Club, a RV park. Bummer he missed the Hurricane Katrina briefing at noon. Still our fearless leader trudged on and made it to Cucamonga, California by 4:40pm. On August 30th, 2005, President George Walker Bush doesnt lose a step and continues on with his drug politicking tourway to make a difference. By September 1st, the President gets around to addressing the nation on Katrina and states, I dont think anybody anticipated the breach of the levees.

It seems to me, after looking at the documented facts, there was plenty of time to evacuate Louisiana. Unfortunately, President George Walker Bush did not okay the order to evacuate until he returned from vacation the day before the hurricane hit. The lack of supplies left many dying of dehydration and starvation.

Last year, President George Walker Bush cut the budget to repair the levees around New Orleans. The damage may have been far less severe; the death toll may have been too. As it is, the death toll is at least 1,836 people.

Gas prices rise due to the hurricane, but there seems to be a direct tie to the oil companies the Bush family happens to be heavily invested in.

His defense? The Bush Administration hides behind the War on Terror stating the fog of war blinded them early on to the magnitude of the disaster. But videos and transcripts show federal and local officials discussing threats clearly as they reviewed long-made plans and understood Katrina would bring devastation of historic proportions.

3 & 4) Misconduct relevant to the War on Terror

This one is a biggie. So big in fact, the House of Representatives have created a select committee to investigate the Administrations intent to go to war before congressional authorization, manipulation of pre-war intelligence, encouraging and countenancing torture, retaliating against critics, and to make recommendations regarding grounds for possible impeachment. The committee consists of eight members of the US House, it is labeled under Resolution 635.

In brief, we have found that there is substantial evidence the President, the Vice-President and other high ranking members of the Bush Administration misled Congress and the American people regarding the decision to go to war in Iraq; misstated and manipulated intelligence information regarding the justification for such war; countenanced torture and cruel, inhuman and degrading treatment in Iraq; and permitted inappropriate retaliation against critics of their Administration. There is at least a prima facie case that these actions that federal laws have been violated from false statements to Congress to retaliating against Administration critics, Rep. Conyers said in a press release on 12/20/05.

If war is the gravest decision a president can make for his country, I believe lying to Congress and the American people to gain support for military action to be the highest offense. The repercussions of attacking can be death for hundreds, thousands, or even tens of thousands of people. We should also consider the diversion of vast sums of money to the war effort. With no end in sight, this fraud cannot go unpunished.

His first justification for war was the possession of weapons of mass destruction in Iraq. Zero weapons of mass destruction have been found to date in Iraq. Then the Bush Administration informs us of the tie between Saddam Hussein and Al Qaeda, but there was no information from intelligence to support this.

President George Walker Bush and his Administration then claim that Saddam Hussein was about to acquire nuclear weapons capabilities, but this intelligence did not prove reliable either.

After returning from the United States, the Chief of British Intelligence reported to Prime Minister Tony Blair and top cabinet members that President George Walker Bush wanted to remove Saddam, through military action, justified by the conjunction of terrorism and WMD. But the intelligence and facts were being fixed around the policy.

The intelligence that has been proven false to date is justification enough for removal from office through impeachment. President George Walker Bush took an oath of office in which he swore to take care that the laws would be faithfully executed.

The disregard for our soldiers doesnt stop there. The Administration failed to provide US soldiers with bulletproof vests and appropriately armored vehicles. This rash decision cost hundreds of soldiers their lives. The truth is the decision to engage in combat was not due to an imposed threat, it was prompted by political concerns. The Downing Street memo reveals the timeline for the war was set to start thirty days before the 2002 Congressional elections. A tactic that proved effective. Everyone knows you do not change horses in the middle of a race, even if you dont believe in the race.

The Presidents failure to properly outfit our troops cost hundreds of families their loved ones and even if you were not affected by the death of a soldier, you were affected financially. A concern for money is far less severe an offense as the death of an American soldier, but President George Walker Bush should be held accountable for both. This reckless disregard for the welfare of our Nation and the improper governance of a country once it is occupied is another violation of the oath our Commander in Chief took. If proven, this is another offense that can stand-alone for grounds for impeachment.

When questioned on the torture of detainees, President George Walker Bush contested, We do not torture. Unfortunately the facts got in the way of the legitimacy of that statement. Evidence surmounts that the President himself may have authorized detainee abuse.

After Defense Secretary Rumsfeld accepted responsibility for the abuse scandal at Abu Ghraib, hid a detainee from the Red Cross, and attempted orders for the Guantanamo interrogations one would think the President would reprimand. He did nothing. He did not remove him from office; he didnt even discipline Rumsfeld for violating the Geneva Conventions and possibly the War Crimes Act.

The War Crimes Act of 1996 states it is a crime for any US national to engage in the murder, torture, or inhuman treatment of a detainee. Further, anyone in the chain of command who condones the abuse rather than stopping it could be in violation.

Yet another act that raises the question, Why has this man been allowed to retain presidency? Action must be taken; we are quickly becoming the most hated country in the world, but no longer the strongest. How can we be a Nation proud and compassionate, and empower a leader who does not represent that pride? What has he accomplished in his two terms as our leader that Americans, can be proud of? Nothing.

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Debra RiceBy:
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U.S. Congress/ House of Reps.


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